After sitting back and watching the rest of the luxury-subcompact SUV scene mature over the past few years, the Lexus NX is getting back in the game with a modernization of its own. The 2022 model is completely new and its styling is more streamlined than the outgoing generation's, featuring LED headlamps and a windshield with a more aggressive rake. Although the NX shares its chassis and powertrains with the Toyota RAV4, the Lexus more closely resembles the brand's small UX crossover, albeit taller and wider. Lexus will likely offer the 2022 model with two different gasoline-powered engines and also two different hybrids, one of which is a plug-in. The freshly minted 2022 NX will pose a bigger threat to rival small luxury-brand SUVs—namely the Audi Q3, the BMW X1, and the Mercedes-Benz GLA-class—than its predecessor did.
What's New for 2022?
Lexus has redesigned its subcompact SUV for the 2022 model year. It is scheduled to arrive in U.S. dealerships in fall, 2021.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
We expect the redesigned NX to maintain a starting price of around $40,000, but that base model may be too spartan for some luxury shoppers. Selecting the mid-range NX350 brings a new 275-hp turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder, and going with the top-spec NX450h+ offers a plug-in hybrid powertrain borrowed from the RAV4 Prime with up to 36 miles of electric-only driving range. We will know more about the 2022 NX's pricing, standard features, and options closer to the SUV's on-sale date and will update this story with details when we have them.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
Unlike the last-generation model, which was offered with either of two engines, the 2022 NX will have four powertrain options. The base NX250 model will come with a 203-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder while the NX350 will be powered by a 275-hp turbocharged 2.4-liter; both come with an eight-speed automatic, but the while the NX250 can be had with either front- or all-wheel drive, the NX350 has all-wheel drive standard. Two different hybrid options are on the menu, starting with the NX350h, which pairs two electric motors with the 2.5-liter four-cylinder for 239 horsepower. The more exciting option is the top-spec NX450h+, which borrows its 302-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain from the RAV4 Prime. Both hybrids come standard with all-wheel drive. When we get a chance to test drive the NX's various configurations we'll update this story with driving impressions and test results.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
There's no word yet from the EPA on the 2022 NX's fuel-economy ratings. Nor have we had the chance to test the redesigned SUV on our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test route. Lexus claims the plug-in NX450h+ will offer up to 36 miles of electric driving per charge, but the EPA has not weighed in on that estimate yet. When the new NX shows up to our office for testing, we'll update this story with results. For more information about the NX's fuel economy, visit the EPA's website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Cabin design takes a big leap forward with the new NX, with a more modern look and classier materials. The outgoing model offered one of the more spacious cabins in the luxury-subcompact crossover segment, but according to Lexus the new model offers even more passenger room in the rear seat—and additional cargo space as well. Optional features include a panoramic sunroof, heated rear seats, an ambient interior lighting system with 64 different color choices, and black open-pore wood trim.
Infotainment and Connectivity
All NX models are equipped with a touchscreen infotainment system; base models come with a 9.8-inch display while high-end trims get a large 14.0-inch unit. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both standard and work via a wireless connection; a wireless smartphone charging pad is optional as is a head-up display. Lexus hasn't shared information regarding the NX's audio systems, but we expect a premium Mark Levinson setup to be an option.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
Lexus offers a host of standard driver-assistance features in the NX. Shoppers can expect to find automated emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control on all models. For more information about the NX's crash test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:
- Standard automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection
- Standard lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist
- Standard adaptive cruise control
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Lexus offers one of the most comprehensive protection packages in the industry. But while the Volvo XC40 and the BMW X1 come with three years of complimentary scheduled maintenance, Lexus provides that benefit for only one.
- Limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers six years or 70,000 miles
- Hybrid component warranty covers 8 years or 100,000 miles
- Complimentary maintenance is covered for one year or 10,000 miles